Consumer Law is the area of law that seeks to protect the individual consumer (the retail purchasers of goods and services) from inferior, adulterated, hazardous or deceptively advertised products, and deceptive or fraudulent sales or collection practices. It is a broad area of the law that would be employed by someone who has purchased a defective vehicle (lemon law) or other product, someone who falls victim to a scam or illegal advertising, the victim of identity theft, someone who is being pursued by a collection agency for credit card debt or student loans or is being threatened with bank account or wage garnishment and more. If you are being sued on a credit card or collection agency claim, please be sure to visit our PA Credit Card Legal Center.
The state and federal governments have set forth a number of very powerful laws meant to protect the consumer regarding these issues. The Pennsylvania vehicle Lemon Law is one of the most powerful consumer laws in the country. It may provide you with the opportunity for a new car or cash compensation, plus legal fees. Its cousin, the federal lemon law, otherwise known as the Magnuson-Moss Federal Warranty Act, applies not only to vehicles but to any product valued at over $25 that exhibits a defect or non-conformity. Both of the referenced laws provide the consumer with great protections that enable them to receive a full refund or free replacement of their defective product, in addition to the recovery of all reasonable attorney fees necessary to pursue a respective claim. This attorney fee provision allows us to handle most of these claims “for free”. (Meaning that the client does not pay us “out of pocket”).
Another very powerful consumer law is the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. This Act sets forth the specific rights of the debtor and further sets forth the acceptable collection practices that the collector may use. It places limitations on how many times a debt collector may contact an individual, what means they may undertake to collect the debt, who they may contact and when, what information they must have in order to proceed with a claim and further sets forth the rights and potential claims of the debtor in the event that the debt collector violates the Act. This very powerful law is used by our law firm every day to protect consumers whose rights have been violated by debt collectors. Part of the reason that this law is so powerful is because it forces the violating debt collector to pay your legal fees. Yes, the debt collector ends up paying your attorney to sue the debt collector for violations that it made.
The Pennsylvania Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law provides protections for individuals who are abused by businesses or taken advantage of by these businesses. This law provides protection to PA residents who purchase defective vehicles, residents who are being taken advantage of by unscrupulous debt collectors, residents who are the victim of unsavory practices by banks and credit unions, and others. This law is a “catch all” type of law that can be applied in many circumstances.
We are well versed in the rights of creditors and debtors, and in many areas of consumer law. If you have purchased a defective product or have a collection agency attempting to collect a debt (credit card, loan, or student loan) from you, please contact my office at 412-823-8003 or send an email Attorney Greg Artim